It’s time to refresh your IT hardware
Now Is the Time to Focus on Your Future IT Needs.
Our days are busy with never-ending tasks that drain away the time we should be spending to set future goals. It’s easy to let this slip by. But, unless you do, and specifically focus on your growing technology needs, you’ll lose out to the competition.
The right technology is essential if you want to grow your small to mid-sized business (SMB). If yours is like most, your business is overdue for an IT system upgrade. And if you keep putting it off, it will cost you in downtime, possibly penalties for data breaches, and customers who go to your competitors.
Your business requirements have likely grown since your last IT upgrade. Plus, with cloud technology, mobile and collaboration solutions evolving so rapidly in the last few years, you may be missing out on ways to increase productivity and save money.
These technologies have revolutionized the small-business sector. As an SMB, you must compete against much larger companies, so you need to be as lean and efficient as possible, especially when it comes to IT functions.
This means upgrading to an IT infrastructure that supports the solutions and applications required to compete and grow. Don’t worry—It won’t be as difficult as you might think. Here’s how to get going.
Begin by making a list of your current IT solutions, and if they meet your needs now. If you believe you require a major technology overhaul, it’s time to call in the experts. They can advise on the most cost-effective solutions for you. Depending on the scale of your operations, you might need new computers, mobile devices, new software, networking hardware and peripherals, and security solutions.
If you need to upgrade now, do it. (You must maximize your business potential, and without the proper IT setup, this won’t happen.) However, if a total overhaul is unfeasible, you may consider leasing equipment in the short term. Leasing provides the benefits of using up-to-date IT hardware that will likely change in the next three to five years.
At this point, you’re ready to devise your future IT strategy. Examine where you want to be in 3, 5 and, even, 10 years from now. View your IT upgrades as part of a long-term strategy. It’s always best to consult an IT expert who can explain the capabilities you’ll require, how they believe IT will evolve, and help you budget for them. Think of them as your outsourced CIO. The right one should be able to provide the following assistance:
- Provide a thorough Needs Assessment to quantify the level and type of technology you require to achieve your goals.
- Develop and implement a customized plan to meet your objectives.
- Strategically plan for the technologies you need for today and tomorrow.
- Assist with procurement of hardware and software to get you the best prices and value possible.
- Develop IT policies and procedures to ensure the security of your IT, security, compliance, business continuity and disaster preparedness.
- Address whatever concerns or questions you might have.
- Manage your IT administration details so you can focus on your core business capabilities.
A quality IT strategy for your business should end up saving you money, and make your business more productive and competitive going forward. It should reveal how the upgrades will eventually pay for themselves over time.
It may include new mobile solutions to allow your employees to work from anywhere at any time. Additionally, cloud-based services will certainly be enhanced in the coming years with Software as a Service (SaaS), Desktop as a Service (DaaS), and Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaasS) becoming more popular over the years to come. These types of automated solutions used to be cost prohibitive for most SMBs, but they are increasingly becoming affordable.
Be sure that any IT investment or upgrade you make (now or in the future):
- Supports your long-term goals and objectives;
- Streamlines your operations;
- Saves you money over time; and
- Gives you a competitive edge.
Focus on your future IT needs now, to stay on top of technology, and your competitors.
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